ACS Women in Victoria aim to unify the presence for women in IT and put collective energy towards a broad program that partners with industry, government and other groups.
Over the next few weeks, we will be introducing you to your Victorian Branch ACS Women committee members: Chair Maria Markman, Tafline Ramos, Beverley Mwenda, Janet Kistler, Wenwan Xu, Elizabeth Bromham and Margaret Banks.
Wenwan Xu, ACS Women in Victoria committee member
Wenwan Xu is a student studying a Bachelor of Business Information Systems at Monash University. We asked Wenwan a few questions to begin to get you well acquainted with the strong and passionate women we have representing our industry.
How long have you been in IT?
In April, I graduated from a 3-year Infocomm & Network Engineering diploma. I’ve been exposed to the IT world academically since beginning the course.
Why do you love working in IT?
I’m very grateful for staying on this IT path. Three years ago, I enrolled in the diploma of Infocomm & Network Engineering because I thought had no other choices. To be honest I didn’t like it at first and refused to invest effort into problem solving. Among the completion of few academic projects, I obtained a slight sense of achievement even though the outcome was not up to standard. As a result, it slowly changed how I see the nature of IT and everything within the course of study became related. From walking away the problems to accepting its characteristics, and finally utilizing it as biggest strength to build useful IT system. It has been a very dramatic change but yet the luckiest. When I finally made a choice to further my studies not by chance, I knew IT indeed changed my life and encouraged me to be the dominator of my own life.
Why did you join the ACS Vic Women’s committee?
As a member of ACS, I definitely wanted to contribute back to this big community and raise awareness of being a female ICT profession. Being able to share, discuss, inspire and advocate sounds very exciting in any circumstances, not to mention I would be working towards the same goal with people that have similar experience, background, area of expert and interest as me. I wanted to discover the possibilities for female in this special area and advocate this opportunity as a student to all other students that have same passion as me, looking for the right direction and encouragement.
What do you see are the challenges for women in IT?
Self-deprecation, small community, post-pregnancy career, neglect from workforce itself.
What do you think it will take for gender equality in the IT sector?
More attention, more opportunity for women to take that seat at the table. Powerful testimonies to show the ability that’s within and only within women, we just need a bit of push sometimes.
Do you have any inspiring words of wisdom for girls/women wanting to work in IT?
Why work in IT industry? WHY NOT.
Have you had any key milestones in your life that changed the direction of your career?
The fact that I accepted to study IT as the only option, which stimulated me to take on any challenges in my way.
What is your hope for the IT industry?
More attention to address gender diversity as top priority in IT companies.
Why would you encourage others to become more involved in ACS?
ACS is a place that has just what we need from conferences, workshops to professional development and opportunities. It’s a place to broaden our horizon, discover IT trends and most essentially, ACS Vic Woman is here to support all of us.